Chip and PIN trial on track for March

Co-ordinators of next year's chip and PIN pilot anti-fraud scheme in Northampton have allayed fears that the experiment was to be delayed by several months.

Stephen Sinclair, communications director of the programme, said: 'It's going to start in March and we're looking to run it until June.'

He dismissed speculation that plans are behind schedule and said the only thing that would delay the start of the project now is a 'national crisis'.

The trial should finish by June to allow retailers to implement chip and PIN nationally by the end of 2004.